Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 14th Dec 2016 20:19 UTC, submitted by Homer Simpson
Mac OS X

Apple clearly thinks the 'time remaining' estimates were causing more harm than good for users, so the new battery life status menu will now instead only show a percentage of remaining battery life, like on iOS devices, which should offer an accurate prediction. The change will be introduced for all in today's macOS update.

Apple claims that the reports of terrible battery on the new 15" MacBook Pro life are inaccurate, and in response, they removed the "time remaining" indicator.

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But won't replace it
by Auzy on Wed 14th Dec 2016 20:38 UTC
Auzy
Member since:
2008-01-20

But they likely won't replace it with a graph to help diagnose what's causing higher power usage, or with a way to easily identify which apps are consuming the most power.

That only makes the claims of 10hr battery life more suspicious

Reply Score: 0

RE: But won't replace it
by daveak on Wed 14th Dec 2016 21:16 UTC in reply to "But won't replace it "
daveak Member since:
2008-12-29

No they won't replace it with a way to see what apps are using the most power because it already tells you, both in the battery drop down menu, and in activity monitor.

The 10 hours is not just a claim, it is a reality for the use case they state, web browsing. (I have one, one of the 10.12.2 betas fixed the battery problem)

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: But won't replace it
by dpJudas on Thu 15th Dec 2016 02:08 UTC in reply to "RE: But won't replace it "
dpJudas Member since:
2009-12-10

No they won't replace it with a way to see what apps are using the most power because it already tells you, both in the battery drop down menu, and in activity monitor.

Except, of course, that it doesn't always show what is using battery. I just had it update Xcode and during its "Installing.." phase the battery estimate dropped to little less than 3 hours. Yet, that list of apps using energy remained empty. As I'm typing this, the estimate has crawled back up to 7 hours.

The 10 hours is not just a claim, it is a reality for the use case they state, web browsing. (I have one, one of the 10.12.2 betas fixed the battery problem)

That sure depends on exactly what you do in that web browser! My Macbook Pro doesn't even get close to 10 hours when I use my browser to play music via youtube..

Anyhow, they gave me a real reason not to upgrade macOS on my computer. As there's virtually nothing of interest to me in the new version, I've been wondering for a while if I should upgrade it just to be on the latest. This change sealed the deal - no upgrading for me. I actually like seeing an estimate, even if its not very accurate.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: But won't replace it
by daveak on Thu 15th Dec 2016 20:21 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: But won't replace it "
daveak Member since:
2008-12-29


Except, of course, that it doesn't always show what is using battery. I just had it update Xcode and during its "Installing.." phase the battery estimate dropped to little less than 3 hours. Yet, that list of apps using energy remained empty. As I'm typing this, the estimate has crawled back up to 7 hours.


If the significant energy usage list is empty then you can still check under energy in activity monitor and see which processes have the highest impact. This will also show processes which are no longer running.

That sure depends on exactly what you do in that web browser! My Macbook Pro doesn't even get close to 10 hours when I use my browser to play music via youtube..

Anyhow, they gave me a real reason not to upgrade macOS on my computer. As there's virtually nothing of interest to me in the new version, I've been wondering for a while if I should upgrade it just to be on the latest. This change sealed the deal - no upgrading for me. I actually like seeing an estimate, even if its not very accurate.


If you are using one of the new rMBPs and aren't using the 10.12.2 then you would probably suffer from the problem mentioned in the article and not get the stated 10 hours. The 10 hours is also with Safari and screen brightness 4 (I think) below max.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: But won't replace it
by segedunum on Thu 15th Dec 2016 14:58 UTC in reply to "RE: But won't replace it "
segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

The time remaining indicator has never been a problem before..........

It might also be a good idea to upgrade how they calculate time remaining to make it more accurate.....

Edited 2016-12-15 15:00 UTC

Reply Score: 5

RE: But won't replace it
by kristoph on Sun 18th Dec 2016 18:43 UTC in reply to "But won't replace it "
kristoph Member since:
2006-01-01

There is some graphs in the activity monitor but honestly it's usually always the same.

Unless I am working with VM or running simulator my highest power using app is always Chrome.

Reply Score: 2

Or maybe...
by darknexus on Wed 14th Dec 2016 21:11 UTC
darknexus
Member since:
2008-07-15

Or maybe the new Macbook just got awful battery life? What competent reviewer relies on battery time calculations from any operating system? They time it themselves, or they're not qualified to review battery life in the first place!

Reply Score: 6

RE: Or maybe...
by kristoph on Sun 18th Dec 2016 18:37 UTC in reply to "Or maybe..."
kristoph Member since:
2006-01-01

The reviewers did all time it and, for most, it came out to match Apple's claimed numbers - between 9 and 10 hours

That said I've found I get around 6-7 when I work on a plane for example, which is a little higher then my older MacBook Pro which got 4-6 depending on workload ( however this was after 1.5 years of use so I think the battery life is somewhere between the same or a little lower ).

Note that I develop software and run VM's and such so I don't expect my battery usage to match the posted numbers ( my Razer gets about 50% of it's claimed battery life for comparison ).

Reply Score: 2

I call BS.
by bryanv on Wed 14th Dec 2016 21:40 UTC
bryanv
Member since:
2005-08-26

I've had an MBP for almost 3 years now.

I have no complaints about my late 2013 MBP, except for gfx performance and speed. Both of which were fine when I bought it, but it's long in the tooth now.

I've had two days in my 3 years of nearly daily use, where I wished I had more battery life -- and those were days I forgot my charger.


When they announced the new models, they made them smaller, with a speed bump. The machine was small enough! I've never thought, 'gee, this needs to be smaller.'

If _anything_ I'd be fine with them making it twice as thick (and heavy) if that meant all that space & weight went to battery.

Instead, they made the thing smaller.

And now people are complaining about the battery performance. Gee. I wonder why.

Apple: Give me a machine with 16GB RAM, a bit thicker than the late 2013 MBP, and with a bigger battery, and they'd fly off the shelf.

Instead of actually delivering what the market _wanted_, they've shoved in the touchbar (a thing none of us really _needed_, and a thing certainly none of us were _asking_ for) in order flog devices.

Oh well. My next laptop won't be an Apple.

Reply Score: 8

RE: I call BS.
by leos on Wed 14th Dec 2016 21:52 UTC in reply to "I call BS."
leos Member since:
2005-09-21

I've had an MBP for almost 3 years now.

I have no complaints about my late 2013 MBP, except for gfx performance and speed. Both of which were fine when I bought it, but it's long in the tooth now.


Your argument is confusing. You're happy with the MBP except for performance. The new ones have more performance while keeping the same battery life and getting thinner. Your conclusion is it's a disaster and you won't buy another one?

Doesn't make sense. There were some isolated reports of poor battery life, but it seems the latest OS update fixed that. The battery life is the same as it always was.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: I call BS.
by bryanv on Thu 15th Dec 2016 03:15 UTC in reply to "RE: I call BS."
bryanv Member since:
2005-08-26

Yeah, I can see how my complaints in this context seem all over the place.

* Performance is my primary complaint, and the limitation of RAM. I use a _lot_ of VMs when doing my job. 8GB is starting to feel tight.

* Battery life would be my second complaint. I have to carry my adapter everywhere. After 3 years, I get about 5 hours on a full charge, if I'm not actively doing my job. On heavy workload days, I get about 2 hours.


I was hoping the new MBP would include:
* 16GB RAM option (they don't)
* Higher capacity battery

The explanation I've heard about not offering 16GB is that it didn't fit the battery capability profile which enabled the 'size reduction'.

I would have been happier to have a 16GB model with a battery that could handle matching the current charge / discharge profile in the same physical size, than to have an 8GB model with a battery that matches the current charge / discharge profile in a smaller physical size.

Physical size was never a concern of mine.

16GB is. (despite the hollering of people yelling that the SSD pages fast enough)

If the reason they didn't do 16GB was the battery, then they should have left the physical size the same, and shoved a higher capacity battery into that space, enabling the 16GB. Battery tech has come a long way since the MBP model I have.

I believe this is a case of Apple putting form over function, which I'm growing increasingly weary of. When Form results in better function I'm all for it, but in the case where the utility of the tool is crippled or diminished by some unnecessary form imposition, screw that.

I jumped at the model I have, because the form was amazing and the specs were competitive at the time. I do not believe that to be the case with Apple laptops in the current market. Maybe I'm wrong. I have a feeling they're about to loose their foothold with developers, though. From what I've heard around my office, there are rumblings.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: I call BS.
by REM2000 on Thu 15th Dec 2016 08:07 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I call BS."
REM2000 Member since:
2006-07-25

i thought the new MacBooks did go up to 16GB RAM? i thought the argument was that they didn't go past 16GB RAM?

A lot of people wanted 32GB as like you say a lot of people run VM's

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: I call BS.
by leos on Thu 15th Dec 2016 18:58 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I call BS."
leos Member since:
2005-09-21

As someone else mentioned, 16GB is an option.

However more battery life with the same thickness would have been great. It should be 10 hours with a heavy workload, and 20 hours web browsing. I bet they could have done it if they wouldn't have made it thinner.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: I call BS.
by henderson101 on Fri 16th Dec 2016 09:16 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I call BS."
henderson101 Member since:
2006-05-30

...Physical size was never a concern of mine.

16GB is. (despite the hollering of people yelling that the SSD pages fast enough)


Hey, you're in luck... 16GB is an option.


13" (non-touch bar)
8GB of 1866MHz LPDDR3 onboard memory
Configurable to 16GB of memory

13" (touch bar)
8GB of 2133MHz LPDDR3 onboard memory
Configurable to 16GB of memory

15"
16GB of 2133MHz LPDDR3 onboard memory



13" non-touch bar (aka MacBook Escape), is basically a MacBook Air equivalent (processor/chipset wise) in a MacBook Pro chassis... that's why the RAM is slower.

Reply Score: 2

Sounds worse on the surface
by David on Wed 14th Dec 2016 23:11 UTC
David
Member since:
1997-10-01

Though this sounds like Apple has a guilty conscience, and really wasn't a good PR move on their part, once you consider the reality of the situation, it's pretty reasonable. A computer's battery estimate is one of those "how long is a piece of string" questions, because the battery life depends on how much power the laptop is going to use in that future time period. Since the newer Intel platforms are even better at sipping power during idle or semi-idle times, you can get a lot of life if you're doing tasks that don't need the power, and suck the battery dry fast if you're doing other things.

On the other hand, it's the same deal with "distance until empty" in most new cars, because lots of stops and starts or a big uphill section can severely impact efficiency. And that hasn't stopped car makers from giving it the old college try. If anything, newer cars are more likely to have DTE estimates. So while Apple's excuse is credible, it still a cop-out.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Sounds worse on the surface
by laffer1 on Thu 15th Dec 2016 00:43 UTC in reply to "Sounds worse on the surface"
laffer1 Member since:
2007-11-09

Well I've always assumed it was based on current usage patterns and not accurate. However, on older Macs I used to use the estimate to decide if I needed to turn down the display brightness or cut back on power hungry tasks so that I could make it until I could get to a power outlet. This was extremely useful when I was an undergrad.

For me, it's just the latest thing apple has taken away from us. I'm getting real tired of that.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Sounds worse on the surface
by REM2000 on Thu 15th Dec 2016 08:06 UTC in reply to "RE: Sounds worse on the surface"
REM2000 Member since:
2006-07-25

came to post the same thing,

I knew that the numbers it gave me were estimated but i knew if i carried on using my MacBook Air with my current work load i had 1 hour'ish or 2 hours'ish etc..

Im really annoyed they took this out, if anything put in some text "estimated" or an option to put it back in through the settings.

I did rely on this feature especially when traveling by train, like you say if the numbers started falling i would lower the brightness, i dont want to keep opening the activity monitor to the do the same.

Reply Score: 4

This is a terrible idea
by Poseidon on Thu 15th Dec 2016 02:19 UTC
Poseidon
Member since:
2009-10-31

I could understand making time remaining the non-default option, but the time estimate is extremely useful for students using word processing or reading, even just on Skype sessions. It's also a nice ballpark to estimate when you're going to need an outlet, and I haven't checked if it stopped the time until fully charged as well.

If I wanted an iOS appliance I would get one, the MacBooks aren't those, but if that's where they're going, they're going to have a rude awakening when users jump ship.

Reply Score: 4

RE: This is a terrible idea
by leech on Thu 15th Dec 2016 07:04 UTC in reply to "This is a terrible idea"
leech Member since:
2006-01-10

My god, all they have to do is word it better, I think the Gnome one says something like "Estimated time under current load:" Either that, or I'm actually intelligent enough to understand it that way.

Were there really that many people that didn't understand this and complained? Granted if there are run away applications that are somehow white listed from being in the power draining apps list (which it sounds like maybe Apple did that for their own software!) then that is certainly an issue.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: This is a terrible idea
by agentj on Thu 15th Dec 2016 07:20 UTC in reply to "RE: This is a terrible idea"
agentj Member since:
2005-08-19

... or how about using higher battery capacity ? New macbook pro (apparently that's short from Pedophiles Running an Organization instead of "professional") sucks dick. If you can get 10 hours of battery life when doing almost nothing but staring at the damn thing then what is it for ? Maybe they should use eink display and claim infinite battery life ? That's why I bought 2015 model.

Reply Score: 4

Hiding their CPU-hogging process bugs
by theosib on Thu 15th Dec 2016 12:33 UTC
theosib
Member since:
2006-03-02

If you open Activity Monitor while only the most basic apps are running, you'll find several processes using 20% or more CPU constantly. These include: soagent, accountsd, CalNCService, CalendarAgent, and several others. These are why Apple's battery life sucks. Additionally, AppleSpell.service has some kind of horrible memory leak, and mine right now is at 3.22GB. Unfortunately, if I kill it, a bunch of other apps will crash.

I was hoping that Sierra would fix the terrible memory leaks in Safari and Preview, and they've been mitigated slightly, but mostly Apple has just pasted over their memory management problems with more aggressive compressed swap.

Reply Score: 4

Art of estimation
by kwan_e on Thu 15th Dec 2016 15:00 UTC
kwan_e
Member since:
2007-02-18

Why can't everything just give you a worst-case estimate?

Reply Score: 4

RE: Art of estimation
by Morgan on Sat 17th Dec 2016 13:02 UTC in reply to "Art of estimation"
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

That would be nice, but it would be fodder for other manufacturers to slam Apple. I don't agree with them removing the estimate, but I do understand it.

Reply Score: 2

Poseidon
Member since:
2009-10-31

The only place to find the estimate for now is in the activity monitor. Anyone want to take bets on how much that will last?

Reply Score: 2